Estonia commemorates June 1941 deportation with national day of mourning
June 14th was the the Day of Mourning and Commemoration in Estonia to mark the 81st anniversary of the Soviet mass deportation of June 1941.
Over 10,000 people, including children, were deported, primarily to Siberia. Only 4,331 persons returned to Estonia.
The fresh memory of the deportations and terror of the first Soviet occupation (from June 1940 to July 1941) was the main reason 75 000-80 000 people fled from Estonia in the late summer and autumn of 1944, as the Red Army advanced into and occupied Estonia again.
In their adopted countries (from Sweden, to North America, to Australia and elsewhere) the war refugees formed various organisations of expatriate Estonians that focused on preserving Estonian culture and fighting for independence, forging the global Estonian community that exists and still flourishes to this day.
Read more about yesterday's commemorations:
Read more about the history of the June 1941 deporations: